Wednesday, January 13, 2010

An Amazing Will To Live

I was reading my friend Matt's blog this evening and was absolutely mesmerized by an article he posted regarding an astounding medical feat from 1961. The article is a case study in the British Medical Journal about a surgery done at an Antarctic polar research base that wasn't equipped with a medical facility. The fact that the 12 residents of the base had to create a makeshift hospital there isn't actually the incredible thing though. The fascinating and astounding part of the story is that the resident of the base that happened to get sick and need surgery was the surgeon. The only surgeon. The only person the base with medical training. The only person on the base who could possibly perform surgery. The person who had to perform surgery on himself. Oh yes. ON HIMSELF.

This story is absolutely incredible. You should definitely read it in its entirety here. I find such amazing feats of courage and intestinal fortitude (literally) so fascinating and inspiring. Maybe I'm more captivated by the story right now because I'm in the midst of reading a book called Year of Wonders lent by my friend Lindsay about similarly amazing feats of courage. I'm only about a third of the way through so far, and while it's certainly an incredibly sad story about the plague in a British village in the 17th century, it's also a fabulous story about the determination of the human spirit. I'm admittedly easily entertained when it comes to literature, but so far I think it's a great book!

Back to the original point though--you totally have to read this article!


cw said...


Leah B said...

Thats totally odd, I just finished that exact book last week (and I've had it for over a year). It was definitely a good read. I have a feeling you would make a good book swap partner.

Tish said...

whoa girl...whoa